The White House national security advisor again denied that President Trump improperly shared classified information with Russian diplomats in an Oval Office meeting last week, seeking to quell growing criticism of Trump's reported disclosure.
Speaking to reporters at the White House, H.R. McMaster called Trump's conversation “consistent with the routine sharing of information” between the president and a foreign power.
McMaster said Trump "wasn't even aware" of the source of the information and again called "the premise" of a Washington Post report that Trump had improperly shared highly classified intelligence "false."
The saga of President Trump and his relationship with Russia continues to grow. And grow. And grow a little more.
On Monday, news reports said Trump shared highly classified intelligence about Islamic State in his Oval Office meeting last week with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
The intelligence was provided by a U.S. ally on the condition it not be shared, according to the news reports.
National security advisor H.R. McMaster answers questions about reports that President Trump shared highly sensitive information with Russia.
I stand by my statement that I made yesterday. What I'm saying is really the premise of that article is false ... I think what I'd like to see really debated more, is that our national security has been put at risk by those violating confidentiality and those releasing information to the press.
H.R. McMaster, President Trump's national security advisor
The Senate's top Republican says “we can do with a little less drama from the White House” so the GOP can focus on advancing the party's legislative goals.
Appearing Tuesday morning on "Bloomberg Daybreak," Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky was responding to reports that President Trump revealed highly classified information about the Islamic State group to Russian officials.
McConnell says, “I think we could do with a little less drama from the White House on a lot of things so that we can focus on our agenda.” He said that agenda included deregulation, tax reform and repealing and replacing the healthcare law.
After a brief hiatus of sun and fun, former President Obama emerged last month in his hometown of Chicago and immediately stepped into controversy over his post-White House buck-raking.
Obama appeared onstage before students and delivered a civic-minded exhortation to public service. What raised eyebrows — or, rather, certain eyebrows — was news the former president would be delivering a paid speech in September at a healthcare conference run by the trading and investment firm Cantor Fitzgerald.
The deputy attorney general in the middle of the furor over the Russian investigation and the firing of former FBI Director James B. Comey said in a speech Monday night that he was focused on protecting the republic and not his reputation.
"I took an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. There is nothing in that oath about my reputation,” Rosenstein said in a speech to a business group in Baltimore.
“If you ask me, one of the main problems in Washington, D.C., is everybody is so busy running around trying to protect their reputation instead of protecting the republic, which is what they're supposed to be doing," Rosenstein said.
In tweets Tuesday morning, President Trump said he had shared "facts pertaining to terrorism and airline flight safety" with Russian diplomats in an Oval Office meeting last week, confirming a key part of a news report his aides had denied the night before.
Trump said he had shared the information in the hopes of getting Russia to "greatly step up their fights against ISIS and terrorism," referring to the Islamic State.
As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining....
Trump did not address the allegation at the heart of the story published Monday evening by the Washington Post -- that the information he gave Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ambassador Sergei Kislyak included details provided to the U.S. by a foreign intelligence service that were highly sensitive and that the U.S. had promised not to share with other countries.